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Civil Liberties and National Security

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Civil Liberties and National Security


Publication date 2010-12-09
Language English
Committee on the Judiciary - mars-4:hrs04JUD2141_101209 - Rayburn 2141 - Civil Liberties and National Security - Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties. I want to welcome our witnesses to what I consider an unusually important hearing in this Subcommittee. And I begin by welcoming this distinguished list of witnesses, Former Associate Deputy Attorney General Bruce Fein is with us this morning; Ms. Mary Ellen O'Connell from the University of Notre Dame Law School is on a plane that is delayed, she will be here shortly; Mr. Jeremy Scahill, investigative reporter; Mr. Michael W. Lewis, associate professor of law at Ohio Northern University, Petit College of Law; Jamil Jaffer of the Kellogg, Huber, Hansen law firm; the director of the American Civil Liberties Union Washington office, Laura Murphy; and the Honorable Thomas R. Pickering, the former Under Secretary of State and former United States ambassador to the United Nations. Without objection, of course, all of the witnesses statements will appear in the record. And before I ask you to begin Ambassador Pickering, I and Mr. Sensenbrenner wanted to make a couple of comments with reference to the issue that brings us here today. The subject is a hearing on national security and civil liberties. Obviously the first question is, is there a tension between the two, or are there areas of compatibility? The power of what has begun to be termed the imperial presidency grows, and the ability of our democratic institutions, especially the Federal legislative branch, us, to constrain it, seems more uncertain.

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